One pro audio company I totally respect is PreSonus. These guys make quality studio gear at reasonable prices and have created a company culture that is motivated by and saturated with making music.

Last year’s launching of their first DAW, Studio One, was a big deal. More than a year later (version 1.6), it seems that the buzz is growing with this new kid on the block. I thought it might be helpful to take a brief look at some of the intruiging features for some of you who are in the market for a good DAW.

So What’s The Big Deal

Studio One was built from the ground up with fresh code. It runs at both 32 and 64 bit. The biggest thing they are pushing is the snappiness of the software along with intuitive drag-and-drop functionality for practically everything in the program. Want a new instrument track? Simply find the instrument in the browser on the right and drag it into the edit window. It instantly creates a new instrument track, drops that VI plugin on said track, arms it and you are ready to go. Effects, sends, loops, can all be dragged and dropped. From what I’ve seen of it, this works really well.

The other big feature is the built in mastering software (in the Pro version only). Basically Studio One has a “Song” page where you record, edit, and mix your songs (like a session file in Pro Tools). But there is also a “Project” page where you can master multiple songs. With built in pro mastering effects and tools and the ability to make adjustments in the multi-track song only to have the mastered stereo file automatically updated in your “Project” page, this feature alone seems worth the look.

Works Seamlessly With PreSonus Hardware

Of coure if you purchase one of PreSonus’ popular audio interfaces you not only get seamless integration with Studio One, but you get a free copy of Studio One Artist bundled with it! This “limited” version has no 64 bit processing, no third party plugin support, and no mastering page. However it is unlimited tracks and you get all the VIs and PreSonus plugins and loops bundled in. So you basically get a free DAW with PreSonus hardware. You can always upgrade to the Pro version for $199.

And with one click templates in Studio One for the PreSonus hardware of your choice, you will save a lot of time creating tracks and labeling inputs. Plus you get zero-latency software monitoring built right into Studio One to run multiple headphone mixes, which is nice.

Updates Look Promising

In its first year of life, Studio One has had two major updates with tons of new features added. These were almost all user feature requests (which means PreSonus is listening!) and the updates are free for registered users. How awesome is that?! It seems that PreSonus is taking Studio One seriously and this new addition to the DAW world is moving in the right direction.

There are a ton of videos on Studio One over at PreSonus’ YouTube channel, so check them out for yourself. If you already have an use Studio One (and I know some of you do) why not leave a comment and let us know your thoughts, good or bad on this new DAW.